The former president and son of the founder of Churchill Truck Lines of Chillicothe, Mo. has passed away at the age of 92. As the son of company founder, Cliff Churchill, Kenneth started in the family business as a janitor’s helper in 1928 at the age of 10, and went on to become company president 1960.
Churchill was born in Garden Grove, Iowa, in 1918, and attended grade school and high school in Meadville, Mo., graduating in 1936. Upon graduation, he immediately entered into the trucking business under the guidance of his late father, Cliff. At its height, the multi-million dollar trucking company spanned 26 states, 100 terminals and employed hundreds of people.
Since 1936, Kenneth has been associated with Churchill Truck Lines, Inc., serving as Secretary-Treasurer from 1936 to 1960, president from 1960 to 1966; and Chairman of the Board and president from 1966 to the present. There was never a task too remedial, too mundane, too unimportant, or too dirty to do as he worked long and hard to grow a very successful business in a very tough, highly competitive industry. Through the years, he touched friends, business associates, employees, and competitors alike.
Among his achievements and awards, in 1980 he received the Frank G. Campbell Award for Outstanding Service. This award is given to an individual in Missouri for his/her distinguished record of service to the Transportation industry, the Missouri Motor Carriers Association, and his/her community. In 1986, he was named the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce “Business Person of the Year.”
But his business interests seem to have been just a small part of his professional life. Throughout the years, Kenneth Churchill served on numerous boards and took an active role in the community of Chillicothe. Among his dozens of stewardships, he served as president and vice president of the Missouri Bus and Trucking Association, and served many years on the Board of Directors. He served and chaired various standing committees, including Public Relations, Legislative, and Membership, Past President (1966), and member of the Missouri Motor Carriers Association (MMCA) Executive Committee and Board of Directors since before 1960.
He was a Member of the Association Finance Administrative Committee MMCA, chairman of the Committee for Sound Transportation, board member and past president of Missouri-Kansas Motor Carrier Conference, board of directors of the Rocky Mountain Motor Tariff Bureau.
He was ATA vice chairman at Large (1988-1990), ATA Executive Committee member, Chairman of the Special Committee of Nominations for Officers of the Middle West Motor Freight Bureau (MWMFB), chairman of Executive Committee of MWMFB, and member of MWMFB Board of Directors.
Outside of trucking, he served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Missouri State Chamber of Commerce, he was a member of the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce, the Chillicothe Industrial Development Board (now CDC), and he served many years on Citizens’ Bank Trust Company Board of Directors.
Kenneth Churchill was also an active member several community service groups, and he was a member of the Chillicothe United Methodist Church, where he ushered beyond his 92nd birthday.
He is survived by his sons Fred and David, daughters Connie and Julie, and brother Paul. Kenneth married Eugenia Minnis on May 25, 1940. Jeanne preceded him in death on August 15, 2010.
Funeral services will be held at the Chillicothe United Methodist Church, Chillicothe, Missouri, on Monday, October 25, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. There will be a scheduled family visitation on Sunday, October 24, 2010 from 4:00 until 6:00 p.m. at the Lindley Funeral Home in Chillicothe, Missouri. Friends may call on Sunday from 9:30 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. at Lindley Funeral Home. Burial will be in Resthaven Memorial Gardens, Chillicothe, Mo. Memorial contributions may be made to the Chillicothe United Methodist Church and/or the Chillicothe Parks and Recreation.
Online condolences may be left at Lindley Funeral Homes
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